As of Monday, March 16, 2020, staff who are able to work remotely should be doing so. Meetings can be held using Zoom or conference calls. If you have technical questions, contact the Help Desk; for all other issues, please contact your manager or Human Resources staff.

Resources for Staff

*Please always refer to local guidelines for remote work and other local policies.

Access to buildings

As of March 16, the GSD has closed access to our academic facilities, including the Fabrication Lab and Loeb Library, until further notice. If you need to access your office to retrieve critical items or documents, please consult with your department’s manager for approval. Once approval has been granted, email for logistics assistance. While on-site face coverings are required in all common areas per CDC, State, and University guidelines.

Flexwork – Telework Resources

The Flexwork HARVie page offers information for supervisors and employees on how to lead and work remotely under these unprecedented times. The Telework Continuity Tool Kit includes best practices for successful telework practices and more. Scheduled Flexwork Overview Sessions will continue on the Harvard Learning Portal via Zoom. As always, please feel free to contact GSD Human Resources anytime with questions.

Virtual Help Desk

As of March 16, CRG staff are offering a Virtual Help Desk through Zoom. Connect live 8:00 am to 10:00 pm Mondays through Fridays for help resolving IT-related issues.

Travel policies and campus restrictions

All university-related international travel is prohibited. All personal international travel is strongly discouraged. All university-related non-essential domestic air travel is prohibited. We strongly urge extreme caution and judgment for your personal domestic travel. Anyone who returns or arrives to campus from a location with a CDC level 3 travel warning for COVID-19, must complete this confidential health form at least 48 hours before your return/arrival to campus and self-isolate using guidance from Harvard University Health Services. Most self-isolations will last 14 days.

University-related emergencies

Contact the 24/7 Operations Center at 617-495-5560. Building Services will be monitoring the email address A full list of Emergency Contacts for the GSD Community can be found in the Resource Center under Emergencies.

Back-up Care

As you manage work and whatever caregiving responsibilities you may have — whether for young children, elders, other adults, and even yourself — you are probably making complex calculations about safety. If you feel it is right for you and your family, and you choose to hire an in-home caregiver beyond your own personal network, you may want to look at Harvard’s WATCH portal, which is a Harvard-only site listing Harvard parents and Harvard caregivers. Subsidized in-home back-up care through Care@Work is also available, although their pool of caregivers is under high demand. As you decide, please read about what Care@Work offers and how they are approaching safety in the context of coronavirus. And remember: pre-registration is required to use any of their programs.

The SOURCE program is a separate, small subsidy available to employees earning under $75K FTE to help reimburse back-up care expenses (for a child or adult dependents) and for self care. The process is straightforward: you pay someone from your personal network or any of the resources described above. Then you and they complete the pdf claim form and send it to the Office of Work/Life. No printer at home? No problem; just use a digital signature on the pdf.

Harvard’s Employee Assistance Program

During this period of severe disruption, please know that you and other adult household members can call Harvard’s Employee Assistance Program (1-877-327-4278) for confidential services including options like telecounseling, chat, and telephone consultations, resources and referrals, budget and debt counseling, legal consultations, and much more. All of these are free services and are available during office hours. Crisis/counseling support is available 24/7. They also have a robust website of resources, self-assessments, online tools and training, and a webinar archive.

Frequently Asked Questions

My work is impossible to do from home. What should I do?

Staff who cannot perform all or some of their duties should work directly with their managers to identify alternative work that can be done remotely. GSD Human Resources should be consulted as needed.

How else can I stay informed of changes and updates?

Regular updates will be sent via email, and COVID-19 Guidance for the Harvard Graduate School of Design Community will continue to be updated with new information. Employees can visit the Workplace Policies page as the situation unfolds and should make sure that their personal and emergency contact information is up-to-date in PeopleSoft and MessageMe.

What happens if I become ill and cannot work?

Please refer to the University Workplace Guidelines.

I am a non-faculty academic employee (post doc, research associate, etc.). Will the GSD still help me arrange my visa?

Yes. Faculty Affairs will continue working individually with international faculty and with Harvard International Office on visas.

Can I still submit a sponsored research grant proposal?

Research Administration services will continue. Please contact Anne Mathew if you plan to submit a sponsored research grant proposal prior to May 1, 2020. Completed proposals must be submitted at least one month in advance of the sponsor's due date to provide adequate time for GSD internal and university-level review and approvals. For more information, contact Research Administration staff.

Do I need to self-isolate for COVID-19?

HUHS has put together a one-pager of potential scenarios based on the best scientific advice currently available (updated March 16, 2020).

This page will be updated as new information becomes available. Last updated June 3, 2020 9:50 am EDT.